Jennifer Hudson, Academy® Award-winning actress and GRAMMY® Award-winning recording artist, is set to release a new original song that is titled “Here I Am (Singing My Way Home).”
The new release will appear on the original motion picture soundtrack to RESPECT and will be the only original song in the film.
“Here I Am” is cowritten with 4-time GRAMMY Award winner, Kennedy Center Honoree, and Roc and Roll Hall of FAme and Songwriters Hall of Fame Inductee Carole King and Jamie Hartman. The single is produced by Black Eyed Peas co-founder and mega-producer will.i.am.
“Music is such a living and breathing character in this film, as it was in Ms. Franklin’s life. The process of creating this song was like constructing the greatest tribute I could possibly offer to her spirit,” said Hudson. “It was the final exhale of this extraordinary project and one that I let out with complete fulfillment. Being able to do so with Carole and Jamie was an incredible privilege. Carole is one of the greatest songwriters of all time and, whether we were trading stories, playing piano together over video conference, or working through lyrics, it was always a masterclass – both in life and music. Jamie and I have collaborated together in the past and it’s always so wonderful to create with him – he is continuously thinking outside of the box in a way that deepens the musical experience in indescribable ways. Our goal was to show that music was always the anchor for Ms. Franklin, in all that she did, and I hope this song illustrates the strength of her voice – both literally and figuratively – which always brought her home.”
Epic Records Chairwoman and CEO Sylvia Rhone said, “What Jennifer, Carole, and Jamie have created together is nothing short of historic. It celebrates the legacy of Aretha Franklin by channeling her spirit and style in an original, no less. As soon as I heard it, I was speechless. It has all the elements of a future American songbook staple.”
Hudson was handpicked by Franklin to portray her in the MGM film, which will open nationwide on August 13, the same day as the soundtrack is released.